Federation of Indian American Christian Organizations FIACONA
 Federation of Indian American Christian Organizations  FIACONA

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Christian group feeds poor people in Delhi, India:

April 4 Matters India

'A Christian group has been distributing home-cooked food and rations to people in need in different parts of Delhi since March 25.
Unity in Christ, a registered NGO, is led by Minakshi Singh, chairperson, who spearheads the efforts to feed people who affected by the 21-day lockdown due to COVID-19 in India.
“We are making food for distribution for poor people. We have also decided to give raw food packets and homemade food in optional days as long as this lockdown lasts, Singh told Matters India. “We intend to render service to people in need during these difficult times. They need our support. Our efforts are all being done by donations of different.....

Coronavirus: Indian Church urged to care for stranded migrants

April 1 Matters India

Catholic bishops of Ranchi, eastern India, have appealed their fellow prelates to reach out to millions of migrant laborers stranded in the country by the 21-day national lockdown.
“These are difficult times and even as we live in lockdown and make every attempt to keep ourselves safe, thousands of migrants are stuck where they are, not knowing where to go or have hit the road with their families and children without transport, monetary means or alimentary provisions,” says the March 28 appeal from Jesuit Archbishop Felix Toppo of Ranchi and Auxiliary Bishop Theodore Mascarenhas.
Indian Prime Minister....

Police Detain Christians Providing Aid to the Poor in Tamil Nadu, India

Mar 31 Morningstar News

Hindu nationalist beats church members, officer slaps them, pastor says. Police in southern India’s Tamil Nadu state rushed to a slum where Christians were providing food and other aid earlier this month and detained them on false charges of forcible conversion, sources said.
Marakkanam police in Viluppuram District humiliated the Christians, including the presbyter of the Viluppuram Church of South India, accusing them in coarse language of trying to fraudulently convert the poor in the guise of providing basic necessities, said the church’s pastor, the Rev. Perumal Kanagaraj.
Shortly after Pastor Kanagaraj and  ....

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STATEMENT: FIACONA Urges Trump to attach Conditions to Virus Aid

April 1 FIACONA

'The Federation of Indian American Christian Organizations is pleased to learn that 2.9 million dollars is allocated for India to fight the Coronavirus issue in the stimulus package.
However, due to the complete lockdown of the country, all private traders and grocers in India had to shut down their shops and outlets leaving the public at large with no options to buy even vegetables from anywhere, for their day to day survival. Mr. Koshy George, the President of FIACONA in a letter to President Trump said, "It is an effort that was never tried at this scale before. The entire population of 1.3 billion people will need ...."..

Coronavirus Exposes India’s Official Callousness

Mar 31 Bloomberg

OPINION: The largest lockdown in history is not, to put it mildly, going as planned. Within a few days of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi announcing on national television that the country was being shut down for three weeks, hundreds of thousands took to the country’s highways, marching long distances back to their home towns and villages. Others thronged bus stations—the trains are not running—hoping for a bus back home. At least 22 people have reportedly died in the mass migration, exhausted and hungry. The point of India’s lockdown, as elsewhere, is to prevent transmission of the .....

India’s coronavirus emergency just beginning as lockdown threatens to turn into human tragedy

March 31 Telegraph

A week after Narendra Modi ordered the largest national lockdown the planet has ever seen and Delhi's Bhogal market is little quieter than usual.
Rather than being confined to home to stop the spread of Covid-19, large groups of residents instead huddle together in the shade, drinking tea and playing cards.
Street vendors continue to hawk fresh fruit and vegetables and the police watch as daily life in the capital's backstreets continues, apparently content to enforce movement restrictions only on the capital's major thoroughfares.
The failure to abide by the prime minister's ....

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General Secretary of Vishwa Hindu Parishad threatens Christians with new wave of persecution:

March 23 Christian Today

...In a media interview, Milind Parande, the General Secretary of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad, or World Hindu Council, claimed that Hindus were being forced to convert to Christianity and Islam.
Most attacks on Christians are launched under the pretext of the alleged "forcible" conversion of Hindus.
According to India's own population data, the conspiracy of mass conversions to Christianity does not hold up, says the U.S.-based persecution watchdog International Christian Concern. "In 1951, the first census after independence, Christians made up only 2.3% of India's overall population 

Christians Suffer Police Brutality, Illegal Arrests in Uttar Pradesh, India. Christians forced to pose like Christ on the cross during police beating

Mar 22 Morningstar News

On March 15 a church of 200 people was immersed in a Sunday service when 30 Hindu extremists brandishing hockey sticks and steel rods arrived with police at the worship hall built on the premises of the pastor’s home in the Kunda area of Pratapgarh District, sources said. “I got down from the pulpit and decided to face them before they cause nuisance or attack any of the members of the congregation.” He could see they were young men of the Hindu extremist Bajrang Dal from his and neighboring villages,. ...

BLOG: A matter of Faith. 

Mar 21 The Daily Pioneer

Recently, a statue of Lord Jesus and 14 crosses portraying events in the Passion of Christ, from his condemnation by Pontius Pilate to his entombment, were removed from a cemetery in Karnataka near Bengaluru by the district administration. It was alleged that the church was encroaching on public land and involved in forcible conversions.
The rule of law and secularism are at the heart of the Indian Constitution and Indian laws. The rule of law assures us of equality before it and equal treatment of laws, liberty, dignity, personal freedom and the right to life. The Preamble to our Constitution and Articles 25 and 26 dealing...

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Radical group attacks Christian hospital and its staff in Mandya, India

March 19, Christian today

Christian hospital in Mandya was attacked by a group of radical Hindus who claimed that the public relations officer and the hospital administrator denigrated Hindu deities.
The attack took place after an elderly Hindu patient at Sanjo Hospital with high blood pressure questioned Simon George, the public relation officer, about the Bible that was in his room. Simon answered him saying that he could read the Bible if he was interested. On the very next day, after the elderly was discharged from the hospital, members of RSS stormed into the hospital and attacked ....

HC rejects BJP leader's petition to ban religious conversions

Mar 18 Christian Today

The Delhi High Court on March 13 asked BJP leader and lawyer Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay to withdraw his petition that called for a ban on religious conversions.
A bench of Chief Justice D. N. Patel and Justice C. Hari Shankar asked Upadhyay himself to withdraw the petition instead of rejecting it and stated that professing a religion was a matter of personal belief and to convert to a different faith was an individual's choice.
In his petition, Upadhyay claimed that many individuals/organizations have started conversions of SC/STs in rural ....

Members of Congress demand India release detained American pastor Bryan Nerren

March 17 Christian Today

Members of Congress are demanding that the government of India release a Tennessee pastor who continues to be detained in the country even after he resolved a customs case brought against him for allegedly not paying duty on money he brought into the country.
"We write to bring your attention to the case of Bryan Kevin Nerren Sr. of Shelbyville, Tennessee. We are immediately concerned with the health of the Nerren family, including Mr. Nerren's daughter with special needs, who has been hospitalized with.........

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Ex- Chief Justice of India, Mr. Gogoi’s nomination to Upper House  by Modi is a tragic blow to judicial independence.

March 17 Scroll

The offer of a cushy post-retirement job is a message to judges who are still working. Throughout his tenure as chief justice, Gogoi was criticised for siding with the government on important matters. Whether it was the investigation into the alleged corruption in the Rafale fighter jet deal or the controversy over the position of the Central Bureau of Investigation director, decisions were either delayed or were openly pro-government. He also provided the Centre a roadmap for a nationwide National Register of Citizens by ramming through the flawed process in Assam. . ...” 

Modi govt to track each and every aspect of 1.2 billion people 

March 17 National Herald

Modi government is in concluding phase to make a database to track every aspect of 1.2 billion people lives, according to a report in Huffington Post India. According to a previously undisclosed government document, the government is planning to create an all-encompassing, auto-updating, searchable database to track each and every resident of the country.
If this project becomes a reality, it will automatically track when a citizen moves between cities, changes jobs, buys a new property; when a new member of a family is born, dies or gets married and moves to their spouse’s home.....

Christians tortured by police in UP, India

March 16 Christian Today

Police officials and radical Hindu nationalists disrupted a Christian congregation of 150 and detained four Christians in a police station for over eight hours in Uttar Pradesh's Dhamayapur village on March 15.
According to Mohit, one of the four detained Christians, a dozen police officers and a mob of over 30 Bajrang Dal activists attacked the regular Sunday worship where around 150 Christians had gathered.
"I saw a crowd advancing towards us. I was so frightened. I was also really worried for my congregation," said Mohit 
The assaulters broke into the worship hall and started to hit the Christians.  ...

Latest News

Citizenship Amendment Act: Reading the UN body’s intervention in Indian Supreme Court.

Mar 16 HiindustanTimes

The intervention doesn’t touch upon the sovereignty of Parliament. It may be prudent for the SC to allow it.
On March 4, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet Jeria, filed an intervention in the Supreme Court on the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 (CAA). She sought to intervene as an amicus in a petition challenging the constitutionality of the CAA. This move raises some interesting questions such as the locus of international law actors to intervene in domestic proceedings, and the extent to which international law influences the ...” 

Tribal animists in central India drove a Christian family into the jungle 

Mar 16 Morningstar News

On Wednesday (March 11), two days after an attack expelling the Christians from Bilood village in Madhya Pradesh state, the wife of the primary assailant stopped the girl (name withheld) as she returned from school to her makeshift refuge in the jungle, her father said. The woman’s husband, identified only as Laxman, had led the March 9 attack on the family of pastor Lalu Kirade, with the assailants later demolishing their home in Khandwa District. Holding her by her hair, Laxman’s wife asked her how dare she enter the village,” Pastor Kirade said. “[Name withheld] told her that she cannot miss....

Now Delhi and Telangana also oppose Modi-Shah’s citizenship ‘Masterstroke’

FMar 16 National Herald

Modi govt’s various measures on citizenship are running into difficulty. Delhi and Telangana are the latest to oppose the National Register of Citizens and the National Population Register
A few days ago, the Bihar government, too, which is a constituent of the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA), voiced its opposition to the NRC and the NPR unless the latter adhered to the 2010 format. Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s decision was hailed by his main political rival in the state, Tejashvi Yadav of the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), who said that Union Home Minister Amit Shah had been “pushed back 1,000 km”.  ...

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